Category Archives: suffering

  1. Paul’s gratitude for insincere preachers (Philippians 1.1-18) [sermon 5-6-2018]

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    April 24, 2018 by jmar198013

    In the first 18 verses of Philippians, we find out that Paul is in prison. And while he’s locked up, some preachers have gone out with selfish ambitions to make a name for themselves and get under his skin. But Paul insisted, “I’m glad, and I’ll continue to be glad.” Even about the insincere preachers. If we can learn the secret to Paul’s gladness, maybe it will help us rejoice in the midst of frustrating times.

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  2. Let this be a sign (John 11.1-44) [sermon 2-18-18]

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    February 18, 2018 by jmar198013

    As the headlines tell us of seventeen massacred in Florida last week, how does this joyful story of resurrection and life speak to us? And what does it have to say about the Lazarus we each carry in our hearts, or see in our world?

  3. New eyes for a new vision (John 9.1-41) [sermon 2-11-18]

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    February 11, 2018 by jmar198013

    When Jesus met a man who’d been born blind, his disciples asked a question that proved they were more blind than he was. They didn’t see his suffering–they only saw him as a problem to be solved, or argument to be won. Sometimes we’re blind in the same ways they were. But by healing that blind man’s eyes, Jesus promised to heal our blindness, too.

  4. God in the furnace (Daniel 3) [Sermon 12-3-17, Advent 1)

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    December 2, 2017 by jmar198013

    In Daniel 3, God didn’t keep his faithful saints from going into the fiery furnace. But God did go through the fires with them. What can we learn from their experience to give us hope in this life? How will we change when we truly trust that God goes with us in everything?

  5. Here comes the sun, here comes the Son (Isaiah 9.1-7; John 8.12) [sermon 11-19-2017]

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    November 17, 2017 by jmar198013

    Isaiah 9.1-7 is addressed to “the people walking in darkness.” These are people who’ve lost everything, and entered into a long, cold, lonely winter of life. But Isaiah foretold that a “great light” would shine upon them one day. That prophecy was fulfilled in Jesus–who breaks the long, dark winter of sin, shame and death.

  6. Getting out from under the broom bush (1 Kings 19.1-18)

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    November 5, 2017 by jmar198013

    In 1 Kings 19.1-18, the dejected prophet Elijah was sitting under a broom tree, in the middle of nowhere, telling God he couldn’t go on. Have you ever had a time like that in your life? God chased Elijah out from under the broom bush, and gave him a new commission. And God calls us out from under our broom bushes, too.

  7. God makes a way out of no way: Exodus, Jesus, and baptism (Romans 6:1-11) [sermon 8-20-2017]

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    August 18, 2017 by jmar198013

    In Romans 6, Paul combines narratives from the Exodus and the death and resurrection of Christ to help us understand the story baptism tells–and gives us to tell.

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